Wurlitzer Jukebox Photos and Repair Journals

Retro Electronics and Audio Lab, Midland, TX.

Updated 7/28/06

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Wurlitzer 2800 Jukebox Repair Journal and Photos (July 2006)

1946 Wurlitzer 1015 Pictures. (June 2006) We replaced just a bad volume control on this machine, its electronics having been repaired several years ago by another company. We present these picture page for your enjoyment. It is not a complete repair journal.

Wurlitzer 3300 Repair JournalWurlitzer 3300 Americana III Repair Journal and Pictures (April 2006) This machine received a new power cord and ballasts, cleaning and lubrication and new capacitors in the amp.

  1962 Wurlitzer 2600 (Jan. 2006) Repair Journal and pictures for 2600.
This machine received a new Pickering magnetic cartridge and preamp, all capacitors were replaced in the junction box and amp, new ballasts and power cord installed, mechanism was cleaned and lubricated.

1966 Wurlitzer 3000. (October 2005)
 This machine had a hum problem but mechanically appears OK. We left the cabinet at the location and removed the amp, control chassis and ballasts. We will replace capacitors on the amp and control chassis and replace the ballasts which have brittle wiring.
Photos: Amp before repairs, top.  Underside of amp before repairs.  Control chassis and ballasts before repairs.

Read Complete Illustrated Story Of Wurlitzer 3000 (Dec. 2005)

1956 Wurlitzer 1900. (August 2005)

Read complete story of the Wurlitzer 1900 restoration.

Will need a general over-all revitalization. We will try to replace the Cobra tonearm with a stereo tonearm to allow a magnetic phono cartridge to be used. We have removed the amp and are beginning repairs. We cleaned corrosion off the amp chassis using Rid-ox and are replacing capacitors on the amp.
We are installing a new tone arm from a 3200 model to allow us to install a magnetic cartridge. Also, we will construct a custom tube-type magnetic phono preamp for the utmost in reliability.

Photos before restoration: Front View  Amp   Ballasts   Carousel   Selection Unit   Rear of Mechanism   Maker's Plate
Title Strips

1947 Wurlitzer 1100. (August 2005)
Here is a complete illustrated article chronicling the Wurlitzer 1100 repairs. It is a work in progress and will continue to be updated.

 This machine is in excellent physical condition.. The design of the 1100 is very user-friendly, both the front and rear open up for easy servicing.

We have completed working on the amp. Some of the capacitors appeared to have been replaced recently with new ones but some of the old electrolytics were still connected. We went ahead and replaced the remaining old electrolytics and installed a new power cord. Someone had put a 10 amp fuse in the fuse holder so we replaced with a 3 amp for better protection. Also, the 5U4 and 6L6 tubes appeared very well worn and tested weak so we replaced them with brand new ones. We checked inside the cobra phono preamp and all the caps had been replaced so we left it alone.

We then re-assembled the amp in the machine and proceeded to test it. There was a lot of old hardened grease in there so we cleaned it with Tech Spray G3 cleaner and re-lubricated with Phonolube, and Hammond organ generator oil.. One thing we found is that penetrating oil is not a good lubricant for long-term use. It can bind with old grease and turn really gummy. One of the best things we have found to use is Hammond organ generator oil as it is designed to remain stable and free-flowing for a long while.

One problem we observed is with the putting back of the record tray into the magazine after play is complete. The motor would shut off before the tray was completely inserted. There is a cam at the front of the mechanism that operates the motor shut-off switch. We loosened the set screws and turned the cam lobe slightly clockwise so the motor would run a little longer and completely insert the tray before shutting off.

We removed the junction box and found that the insulation on the power cord wires was in really bad shape and falling off. We also saw overspray from paint on the deteriorated cord so this unit was cosmetically restored before but the obvious safety hazard of frayed wiring had been left. The power cord was replaced and we electrically disconnected the old screw-type fuse holder and replaced it with a cartridge type fuseholder and installed a 7-amp fuse. We also included a 2 amp fuse for the control transformer.

Then we removed the ballast mounting bracket and attached new fluorescent lamp ballasts and added a new power cord and 1-amp fuse for the ballasts. The title strip rotating motor wiring was re-done as the connections to the microswitch were previously only twisted and not soldered. This mechanism works in a fairly complex way. When the button is pushed to change to the next page of title strips, a wound-up spring supplies motive power to move the mechanism. As the mechanism nears its end of rotation, a microswitch is triggered and the title strip motor runs for a few seconds to wind up the spring mechanism. I wonder why this sort of complex arrangement was used? 

 We also ran a new power line for 110 volt AC to the ballasts and title strip motor and disconnected the 110 volt AC wires from the keyboard cable. While the motor was removed, we sprayed the keyboard switches with Deoxit. We also ran new wiring, including new plugs and receptacles, to the color cylinder motors. We rebuilt the bottom lamp sockets with new wires and installed compact fluorescent bulbs for long life and low heat.

We removed the transformer for the top of cabinet lamps and disassembled it, adding heat shrink tubing over the 110 volt AC leads to help protect against shorts. Also a 1-amp fuse and new power cord were added to the transformer. The secondary 6-volt leads from the transformer were frayed and spliced so we replaced them with 12-gauge high-temperature insulation zip cord and we wrapped metallic tape around the cable where it passes near the lamps to provide addditional heat protection for the cable. The lamps are now brighter.

We observed sticky operation of the mechanism after about a week....we found that more cleaning was going to be needed especially between the record trays and on the selector mechanism that slides up and down. These areas were retaining grease that we could not get out without disassmbly.

In order to release the top retaining plate of the record rack, it is necessary to remove some of the spring tension on the trays. The top plate stablilizes the rod to which the springs attach against the tension. Removing about 2/3's of the springs will do the trick. We then removed all of the trays, spring connecting rods, bearings, and the selector slider mechanism.
All of the rotating surfaces of the trays and the bearings and the selector slider were soaked in Varsol for 2 days. Then, we cleaned the parts some more with Gumout and a toothbrush. After the Gumout cleaning we wiped off residue and sprayed with Con-tak cleaner. THEN we polished the parts with "Never-Dull" wadding cloth. We were careful to not get chemicals on the labels for the record number.

We degreased the center rod of the trays carefully with Gumout on a rag and scrubbed the other parts in there with Gumout on a toothbrush, being careful not to get Gumout on the wood trim. Reassembling the mechanism led to good performance.

Another problem we faced was an intermittent crackling noise as the tonearm moved to the center of the record. We removed the tonearm and re-wired it with new shielded cable and added a new phono plug.

Also, the coin mechanism was intermittent. Sometimes when a coin was inserted, it would jam. We removed the coin unit and applied Deoxit gel to the coin switch contacts, then burnished with a lint-free cloth. This significantly improved coin performance.

Finally, we installed a grounded power cord and ran ground wires to all components for extra safety.

Photos:  Front view.  Amp before repairs.  Selection buttons.  Selection coils.  Underside of amp before repairs.

Front panel.  Mechanism motor.  Phono preamp.  Record magazine.  Speaker.  Testing the machine for the first time.

Record playing on the turntable.  Completed amp.  Inside the preamp.  Repairing the lamp transformer.

Finished lamp transformer.  Title strip motor before repairs.  Title strip moving mechanism.  Re-wired title strip motor.

Deteriorated wiring in junction box.  Re-wired junction box.  Fluorescent ballast and mounting bracket before replacement.

New ballasts installed.  Lamp sockets with old wiring.  Re-wired lamp sockets.  Disassembling the record rack.

Chad cleaning the record racks.  Cleaning the parts with Varsol.  Allowing the clean parts to dry.

Cleaned record trays.  Cleaned bearings.  Rewiring the tone arm.  New lamp wiring in dome.

Completed front view.  Dark view.  Top of cabinet, front view.  Bottom of cabinet, front view.

Chad with completed unit.

Junk early 60's Wurlitzer 2800  This unit is at the Juke Warehouse and is fairly complete except for the amp but will need a  lot of work...we may someday get this one for a restoration project. Front View.

Junk Wurlitzer Americana III Model 3300 This unit is also at the Juke Warehouse, also 2 LPC-1 front panels can be seen. (Note: we had previously incorrectly identified this unit as a 3400 Statesman).

Front View.

1970's Wurlitzer Super Star Model 3600. (July 2005) This jukebox was having distorted sound on one channel but otherwise OK, phono cartridge output was good, so we removed just the amp to the shop for repairs. All 4 output transistors on the amp showed to be bad on the transistor tester. We were able to find another amp with good transistors, so we checked the capacitors on it and replaced any with high ESR, and installed the new amp in the juke. We also found that someone had set the voltage adjustment on the power supply to 90-105 volts...when operating on the 115-120 volts at the usual wall outlet, this position may result in excessive power supply voltage: we re-set the jumper to the 110-120 volt position.
Photos: Amp before repairs.  Control chassis and amp installed in unit.  Mechanism.  Front view of complete unit.

1950 Wurlitzer model 1250. (July 2005)  This machine was somewhat functional but needed some repairs. The power cord was in bad shape so we replaced it along with adding new fluorescent ballasts and connecting fuses for the fluorescent lamps (1 amp) and the control transformer (2.5 amp). It would play one record, return the tray, and play the same record again. We solved this problem by manually resetting all the pins on the memory unit...the crank arm was stuck on one. We greased the selection mechanism and now could get the unit to select.

However, the turntable speed was very erratic and somewhat slow. We found that the idler wheel had black tape wrapped around it to try and increase the speed, so we removed the idler wheel and mounted it to a bolt which was then inserted into the drill. We mounted some sandpaper to the workbench and held the rotating idler wheel to it to remove the hardened outer surface of the rubber...then, we applied rubber rejuvenator and re-installed the wheel. The speed was constant now but still too slow. We removed the turntable motor unit and completely disassembled and thoroughly cleaned it. Also, the insulation was frayed on the motor leads, so we repaired them with heatshrink tubing and added new cables.

We checked the electrolytic capacitors in the amp and it appeared they had been recently replaced...they checked good on ESR meter so we left them in. Most paper caps had been replaced with new mylars but there were a few old ones left so we replaced them. The 6L6 tubes tested weak so replaced them with new Sovteks.

Some selections when pressed would not activate the mechanism...we adjusted the override switch for consistant operation of the mechanism. Also, we adjusted the tone arm height so the bottom tone arm doesn't contact the record when the top side is being played. Also it was found that sometimes the machine was not rejecting at the end of the record when the top tone arm was playing. Adjusting the tonearm height allowed the metal part of the tonearm at the rear to contact the switch lever properly.

We installed a grounded power cord and ground wires to all components to help prevent a shock hazard.

Photos:  1950 Wurlitzer on the truck.  Inside junction box, with new fuses.  Top of junction box.  Rear of cabinet.

Mechanism  Record Magazine  Turntable  Speaker  Repaired Turntable Motor Assembly

Cleaning the motor parts.  Resurfacing the idler wheel using the drill.  Amp under-chassis view.  Completed amp.

Completed front view.  Dark view.

1959 Wurlitzer Model 2300. (June 2005) This machine is in very good condition and was basically functional but had some age-related problems. The turntable belt was replaced, the turntable motor had a new cord and new motor mounts attached, and we replaced old capacitors in the amp, control center, and coin unit, and replaced one 6973 tube. We replaced a bad molex connector going from the coin unit to the control chassis with new Cinch connectors. We have cleaned and lubricated the mechanism, and upgraded the old selenium rectifier to a new silicon rectifier. New fluorescent ballasts, starters, and a bulb were installed. We upgraded the phono cartridge to an Audio-Technica magnetic and installed a phono preamp, and installed a new power cord and plug. We changed the fuses in some of the fuse holders from high amp values like 15 and 8 amps to 6 and 4 amps respectively to give better overload protection, and installed a 1.5 amp fuse in the fluorescent ballast circuit. A switch was installed on the keyboard solenoid to provide free credits for selection but allow the solenoid to be switched off when not in use to prevent overheating.
Photos: Unloading the machine from the truck. Front of machine with title strips removed. Rear of carousel mechanism.      

Side of machine. Amp before repairs. Power supply before repairs. Maker's Plate.

Amp removed from the jukebox, ready for repairs.  Replacing capacitors on the circuit board.

Replacing capacitors at the rear of the amp chassis.  Completed amp chassis.  Replacing capacitors in the power supply.

New capacitors in control chassis.  Repairing the wiring in the turntable motor.  Testing the machine, front view.

Coin mechanism with new capacitors and plugs. 

New fluorescent ballasts installed on brackets with stand-off nuts under brackets for additional heat dissipation.

Solenoid enable switch.  Coin mechanism plug connection.  Rear view of completed unit.

Completed unit, dark view 1.  Completed unit, dark view 2.  Chad with completed unit.

1967 Wurlitzer Americana, Model 3100 (October 2004) This machine would not really do anything when received. We found that there was a problem in the keyboard switch contacts, not allowing the selector mechanism to start. Adjusting and cleaning the keyboard switches allowed the select and play cycle to start. The turntable motor had sagged down, and also the turntable belt was stretched. Repairing these items allowed a record to play. Then, it was found that only the "A" sides of the records were working. The lift arm that pushes the record up to play the "B" side had damage to the record gripper tip on the end, causing a jam. We dissasembled the mechanism and carousel to repair the lift arm. This repair, plus adjustments to the carousel stop points, allowed both sides of the record to play.

Another problem was discovered...certain selections were not cancelling in the memory after they played. Adjustments to the crank arm, plus a small amount of penetrating oil to the memory pins, solved the problem. The machine also received repairs to the woofer leads, a new stylus, new plugs on the lighting cords, and a new power cord. The output capacitors from the power transistors were replaced, too, and any old paper capacitors in the mech and amp were replaced.

Wurlitzer 3100 photos: 1967 Wurlitzer Americana model 3100 dark view, Wurlitzer 3100 Mechanism,

Chad with the Wurlitzer 3100, Wurlitzer 3100 on the Tommy Lift

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